Steven Cheah's NFL Top 100 Players in 2021: #100 - #91
I teased this last week with a look at players on the outside looking in, but here is the start to the official list. These are are the Top 100 Players I'm viewing for this upcoming season based on last season's performance and potential. I did run this by a few people in the league to ensure it's an accurate representation. Here are my guys #91 - #100. The next list will come out next Tuesday at 11am eastern.
*Note - This list is exempt of any Rookies and other Players that played zero games in 2020 due to either injury or opt outs.
100) WR Adam Thielen - Minnesota Vikings (2020 Rank: N/R)
Thielen had a big time bounce back year in 2020 after a disappointing 2019 in which he appeared in only 10 games and failed to break 500 total yards. After the Vikings shipped Stefon Diggs out of town for a 1st rounder (which turned into Justin Jefferson), Thielen got his groove back. He reeled in 74 catches for 924 yards and a career-high 14 TDs. He's so shifty off the line of scrimmage with his releases and a terrific route runner. His hands are also top notch which allows him to score on plays like this:
99) LB Demario Davis - New Orleans Saints (2020 Rank: 67)
A year after getting some recognition by making 1st Team All-Pro, Davis put together another strong season with 119 tackles, 4.0 sacks, and 10 TFLs. He's one of the more underrated players in the league, and while he didn't have the same type of production as the prior season in coverage (down one INT and seven passes defensed), he's still a very good player going into year 10.
98) S Marcus Maye - New York Jets (2020 Rank: N/R)
The Jets dealt Jamal Adams last year to Seattle, but they still have one of the best Safeties in the league in Marcus Maye. He finished 2020 with 88 tackles, 11 passes defensed, 2 sacks and 2 INTs. One of which showed off his athleticism and ball skills while covering one of the league's best WRs in D.K. Metcalf:
97) EDGE Cam Jordan - New Orleans Saints (2020 Rank: 26)
Jordan wasn't the same player in 2020 as 2019. His sack total was cut more than in half going from 15.5 to 7.5 in 2020, but he's still a force coming off the ball. Going into year 11 he's definitely getting long in the tooth, but he's a well-rounded player and able to impact the game from more than just a pass rushing perspective. And even if his sack total is down, don't for a second think he can't get around your Right Tackle in a jif.
96) CB Darious Williams - LA Rams (2020 Rank: N/R)
Speaking of spectacular interceptions against Russell Wilson, Darious Williams did that better than anyone in 2020. He picked off Russ three times including a pick six in the playoff game in January. Williams finished the season with 16 passes defensed, 5 INTs, and 1 TD (including two playoff games). He plays bigger than his 5'9" 187 lbs. size and uses superb instincts and athleticism to make incredible plays like this:
95) OG Joe Thuney - Kansas City Chiefs (2020 Rank: 53)
The Chiefs were in desperate need of an Offensive Line help after having their entire unit fall apart by the Super Bowl. In Free Agency they prioritized Thuney and signed him to a 5-year $80M deal. Thuney is a technician at Left Guard and is best known for his work against Aaron Donald in Super Bowl LIII. The Chiefs are hopeful he can carry some of that over to keep Patrick Mahomes more upright in 2021 and beyond:
94) WR Amari Cooper - Dallas Cowboys (2020 Rank: 57)
Cooper had a solid year with 92 grabs for 1,114 yards and 5 TDs, but remember that Dallas only finished four games with Dak Prescott at QB. In those games, Cooper averaged over 9 catches and 100+ yards per game. Going into his 7th season, he's still an elite route runner and can make a big impact on a team that's expected to put up a ton of points.
93) S Eddie Jackson - Chicago Bears (2020 Rank: 78)
Jackson has been a ballhawk since he entered the league in 2017. And despite him being shutout this year on the interception scoreboard, Jackson still managed to score a Touchdown. He's just got a sixth sense for where the ball is going and he's got fantastic coverage skills on the backend. This play is outstanding for a Safety, mirroring our #94 player in Amari Cooper.
92) EDGE Chandler Jones - Arizona Cardinals (2020 Rank: 12)
Jones only played five games before having to go season ending surgery for a torn bicep. Coming off a 19.0 sack 2019 season, he only finished with 1.0 sack in those five appearances last year. He's entering his 10th season and definitely on the back nine of his career, but with J.J. Watt and a rejuvenated defense, there is hope he can bounce back.
91) WR Terry McLaurin - Washington Football Team (2020 Rank: N/R)
McLaurin is a hidden gem really. He's played with Case Keenum, Dwayne Haskins, Kyle Allen, and Alex Smith and yet still averaged over 1,000 yards in each of his two seasons. Now with Fitzmagic, expect his stock to really take off as his arrow is pointed squarely up. He's a shifty player that gets in and out of his breaks without losing much steam AND he's a burner. It's a rare combination that has had him flourishing in D.C. in spite of who is throwing him the ball. Plus you've got to love the F.U. mentality here. Cowboys CB Trevon Diggs gets into it with McLaurin and the next play McLaurin makes a house call and gives him a little taunt after.
Stay tuned next Tuesday at 11am eastern for the next installment of my Top 100 list, #81 - #90.